Chairman of board of directors of Rockhampton Leagues Club Graeme Crow with Rockhampton MP Barry O'Rourke.
Chairman of board of directors of Rockhampton Leagues Club Graeme Crow with Rockhampton MP Barry O'Rourke. Contributed

CQ community feedback sought for Browne Park expansion

LEADING into the last state election, an upgrade to the Browne Park stadium was regarded as critical to putting Rockhampton on the map for sporting and entertainment events.

Election winner for the seat of Rockhampton, Barry O'Rourke won with the promise to undertake a $75,000 scoping study for the major refurbishment of the venue.

Mr O'Rourke has confirmed that he's been busy behind the scenes since the election working towards getting this priority project off the ground.

"There has been discussions with various people in Rockhampton,” Mr O'Rourke said.

"It's still early days yet but we're still trying to get the right people at the table to develop the project further.”

Rockhampton Leagues Club chairman Graeme Crow, who sits on the committee to drive Brown Park upgrade, said the next stage in the process of building a bigger and better stadium was the community consultation process.

The committee planed to host a public meeting at the Rockhampton Leagues Club on Wednesday, February 28 at 6PM, to provide information regarding the proposed upgrade and seek feedback from members of public.

"We don't want to get the cart before the horse,” Mr Crow said.

"We've got ideas about what we think should occur but first we need to consult broadly and to educate people on the different dynamics involved.

"This is a very significant community project and we're happy to give as much data and information as we can to at least let people know what's going on.”

He said following consultations, they would then go to the designers to see what is and isn't suitable.

STADIUM PLANNING: These are some of the design ideas being considered for the new Browne Park Stadium upgrade.
STADIUM PLANNING: These are some of the design ideas being considered for the new Browne Park Stadium upgrade. Contributed

"That's not to say that work hasn't already been done, there's been quite a bit of work done already including preliminary discussions, prices obtained etcetera,” Mr Crow said.

He said the upgrade project started over 10 years ago and had stalled pending the outcome of CQ's bid to join the NRL and they had now taken the view that they couldn't continue to wait on the idea that they were going to get a licence.

"You would have seen recently with Elton John, he went up to Mackay Stadium and played a concert there because they have a stadium that the federal government funded in which they can seat 12,000 people,” Mr Crow said.

"It's wearing a bit thin for the local community to be constantly overlooked by big international acts.

Mr Crow rattled off other regional areas who had been given stadiums including Cairns, Townsville and the Sunshine Coast and yet Rockhampton continued to be overlooked.

"We feel strongly as a community that we've got to do something about it,” he said.

"We've engaged the community, we've engaged our politicians and we've got support.”



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